Space || Shannon Perrin

You wanted space,
so I brought you up where
planets are welcoming,
stars are endless, and
your future is constant.

I waited down here
for space and time to combine
into whatever you needed.

But you got comfortable
and decided you wanted
a life with leg room.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

 

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Sundown || Natalie Crick

That deluge of haze
just before sundown.

Spring shakes Winter’s hand
goodbye.

Now the day has truly gone.

Street lamps glow
a sodium pink

When blue milk pacifies,
the copper moon sliding up a sleeve of glass,

her luminous lake
drowning the city,

a black felt hat against
heaven’s empty dome.

An indigo deer slips back
through the shadow of night-green cedar.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

Like Smoke || Natalie Crick

November curled itself around my
spine like cigarette smoke,

seeping into me.
December froze in her grey web.

I want to wake from the dark,
sleep naked in moon-cooled dirt,

deep in the night where graves
spread like black pollen.

I am where the wind
snuffs out candles,

can touch a curtain like a ghost,
like a bell.

Like the dead I escort,
sap to want.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

Pebbles || Sandeep Kumar Mishra

Time smooths rainbow hardness
of tree basalt, vermilion jasper,
silvery granite and pale feldspar
with the help of humdrum
but patient jeweler of tides,
volcano-born, earthquake-quarried,
heat-cracked, wind-carved,
death shapes compact among the rocks;
it drifts light as a fractured bone
when the tide uncovers.
It blinks among the smashed shells,
upset by gulls, bleached by salt and sun
the broken crockery of living things.
An eagle surveys from the upland,
unsympathetic to the burdens
I have carried here;
the sea would not hug me, so I sit,
hollow as driftwood, jumbled as pebbles.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

A Quarter Machine || Noah Hale

A doll hangs from the claw
of some quarter machine
that shimmers and leers at you;
it chokes the cotton
from brown paws in the vitrine
of childish hopes
of the carnage of kids and crowns
or the odds of success.
There hangs a doll from a machine
that pulls and screams cries and lies—
a glazy Tantalus on the glass
and in the glass,
my dream.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

A Rainbow Memory || Sandeep Kumar Mishra

When my hollow present blows
the dying embers in the heart grate,
fond childish cinders glow up;
the frozen black memory melts past colors,
a sparkle of rainbow recollections.
As I walk up on our trodden pavement
I see a slash of sea between houses,
your red dress like a bright red boat
sink in golden sand, blue fishing nets
brown fort walls, green lichen beach;
my soul speaks, my lips move
a frequency of meetings, a wave of hugs.
As I net to catch these moments
like a street urchin’s yellow fists
holding the rainbow in his tiny grasp.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.

September Chill || Victoria-Lynn Bell

You take me into muted wilderness
and bid me to listen to your quiet trickle—
through the rooted trees I lie in a thicket
and you whisper in my ear to join you.
I wade into your embrace, and you
wash against the pale gooseflesh of my thighs—
a rivulet between my legs like cold fingers.
Quiet exploration, desperation.
You brush silt against my calves,
the crooks of my elbows, hollow spaces.
I collect you in particles and tremble
as you rush over me—
a swell of September chill.

This was originally published in Fall 2017 edition of The Helix.